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Hrishikesh Mukherjee's best films

August 28, 2006
Guddi (1971)

In Guddi, Hrishida dared to introduce a heroine (Jaya Bhaduri) with a radically different, refreshingly simple, girl-next-door look. She was poles apart from the glamorous Hemas and Mumtazes who were ruling the roost. What's more, Hrishida showcased her in such an endearing light that he steered Jaya to true-blue stardom.

In Guddi, Hrishida trained his camera on Mumbai's film world but it was a largely benign, rather simplistic view. His focus was on a young, innocent girl, who is on the cusp between adolescence and adulthood and is infatuated with film stars, particularly Dharmendra.

Hrishida roped in his star-friend Dharmendra to ingeniously play himself and help reveal to Guddi the humdrum hard work that goes behind the creation of the fantasy. However, what has made this a perennial favourite for many is Hrishida's winning characterisation of Guddi, enhanced by a refreshingly natural performance by Jaya Bhaduri.

Hrishida always peopled his films with interesting supporting actors who are supportive to the main leads and gave them memorable cameos -- Lalita Pawar was unforgettable as the benevolent Mrs D'Sa in Anadi, Shashikala and David were Sharmila's fiercely protective wellwishers in Anupama. Seema was Rajesh Khanna's compassionate sister in Anand. Asrani was Amitabh's peace-making secretary in Abhiman. And in Guddi, Utpal Dutt played Jaya's caring but scheming uncle, which kick-started his memorable career in Hindi films.

Also Read: Guddi comes of age

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